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29 Jan, 2022 20:24

'Small cat' umpire trolls Medvedev ahead of Australian Open final (VIDEO)

The umpire branded a 'small cat' by Daniil Medvedev has poked fun at the Russian star ahead of Australian Open final
'Small cat' umpire trolls Medvedev ahead of Australian Open final (VIDEO)

Chair umpire Jaume Campistol has landed on his feet after being the subject of a telling-off from Russian tennis star Daniil Medvedev during his Australian Open semi-final win against Stefanos Tsitsipas in which the Russian branded the match official as a "small cat".

Medvedev was subsequently fined $12,000 for his outburst which stemmed from his accusation that Tsitsipas was receiving on-court coaching from his father Apostolos - something which is strictly outlawed in the rules of tennis. 

"Oh my God, how can you be so bad in the semifinal of a Grand Slam?" a scornful Medvedev could be heard saying to Campistol.

"You understand, right? If you don't [give him a coaching warning], you are – how can I call it – a small cat," he later added.

The unique, somewhat lost in translation insult was taken by some to be Medvedev's way of calling the umpire a "p***y", and subsequently launched a torrent of memes on social media.

But maybe the small cat jibe worked? Tsitsipas was later hit with a code violation for the repeated coaching infringements and went on to lose the match by a score of 7-6 (7-5) 4-6 6-4 6-1, and moved on to Sunday's final where he will face Spaniard Rafael Nadal - who is hoping to carve out some history of his own by winning what would be a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam.

But before anyone lifts the famous trophy in the Rod Laver Arena on Sunday, Campistol found the time to serve up an ace of his own online - where he poked fun at Medvedev's rather clumsy insult.

The clip, which was uploaded by Campistol to his Instagram Stories, shows him cruising around (what appears to be) Sydney Harbor in a speed boat to the tune of a song called 'Wild (Female) Cat', with the words "Wild cat with your passion" written on screen (via translation) in what can only be described as masterful trolling by the chair umpire.

The clip also displays the words, "I'm good, y'all" as well as a small image of a - you guessed it - cat. 

The light-hearted response to Medvedev's diatribe brings a bit of much-needed levity to what has been a contentious Grand Slam in Melbourne ahead of Medvedev's winner-takes-all showdown with Nadal, and comes after the feel-good victories on Saturday for Ash Barty and the Aussie tandem of Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis in the men's doubles final. 

But it also proves something about Campistol himself: this particular cat definitely has nine lives.